Ju 390 in flight refuelling

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Scarlett
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Post by Scarlett » 06 Aug 2006 15:41

ohrdruf wrote:
The possibility that a very long range secret version of this aircraft had been constructed was suggested by Wolfgang Hirschfeld in his book "Atlantik Farewell: Das Letzte U-boot".
There was a project for a very long range version, the FW 200 F. The fuel capacity rose from 8,600l (FW 200 C-4 reconnaissance version without bombs) to 11,900 l. The range of this version would have been about 3,600 nm; the max. range of the version C 4 was about 2,700 nm.

The FW 200 F was a project only. No aircract has actually been manufactured.
ohrdruf wrote:Manfred Griehl ("Luftwaffe Over America", Greenhill Books, 2004) also mentions FW 200 designs with transoceanic range enabled by long range tanks inside the aircraft hull.
Most of the fuel (~65%) was generally stored in the fuselage, in all version used by Luftwaffe.

None of the FW 200 or Ju 290 ever built is unaccounted for except FW 200 C-4 F8+JR No 0166. This aircraft belonged to 7./KG 40, was heavily damaged by flak during an attack on a convoy and made a forced landing October 15, 1943 at or near Santiago de Compostela in Spain. According to British sources the aircraft was repaired and used by IBERIA for some time after the war. There is no documentary evidence.

So, if the flights Spain-Argentina really happened, they were operated neither by FW 200 nor by Ju 290.

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Post by Gauntlet » 07 Aug 2006 03:41

ohrdruf wrote: It seems likely from the archive documents that there was a second Ju 390 aircraft, Ju 390 V-2. Two test flights at Rechlin are recorded in the log of Oberleutnant Eisenmann for March 1945: an SS report at the Berlin Document Centre states that this second prototype was at Schweidnitz near Breslau in April 1945 for the evacuation of Kammler's Bell project. It was known to have flown from there to Bodo in Norway after which German records are silent. (I can provide closer details regarding the test flights and the SS document if requested.)
Whoa. That was mighty interesting to read (since I am from Bodø)!

Which German records are you talking about, and do you have any further info on just this single event?

Best regards,
Eirik

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Post by ohrdruf » 09 Aug 2006 15:48

Scarlett

Professor Ronald C Newton: "El Cuarto Lado del Triangulo", Ed. Sudamericana, publ Bs As 1995, at pp. 300 and 309 mentions the courier service run between S America and Europe (Rome and Madrid respectively) direct until suspended at the end of 1941. The service was run by the Italian airline LATI and the German Condor airline. Diplomatic material was conveyed by both airlines. Possibly Condor civilian aircraft were re-employed during the period in question.

Eirik

In an English language summary to his book on German advanced wartime technologies in Poland, Igor Witkowski, wrote:

"SS-Sturmbannfuehrer Rudolf Schuster was an officer of SS-RSHA Abt.III. From 4 June 1944 he was responsible for transport with SS-ELF (Special Evacuation Commando). The Commando performed transport duties under the cover name "Agricultural Fertilizers-Oskar Schwartz & Son". In the Berlin Document Centre I found the officer's service sheet. From this it appears he was also at the 'Special Duty Office', SS-WVHA Amt A-V zbV. In his interrogation he told Allied investigators that in the second half of April 1945 a Junkers Ju 390 aircraft of KG 200 had taken materials related to the "Chronos" and "Laternentraeger" projects to Bodo airbase in Norway. The aircraft was painted pale blue and bore Swedish Air Force markings. As far as I remember it took off from the airfield close to Schweidnitz (Swidnice) near Fuerstenstein (Ksiaz). and before the flight was heavily guarded by SS and covered with canvas. In Norway the transport was supervised by SS-Obergruppenfuehrer Jakob Sporrenberg."

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Post by Gauntlet » 09 Aug 2006 16:29

ohrdruf wrote: Eirik

In an English language summary to his book on German advanced wartime technologies in Poland, Igor Witkowski, wrote:

"SS-Sturmbannfuehrer Rudolf Schuster was an officer of SS-RSHA Abt.III. From 4 June 1944 he was responsible for transport with SS-ELF (Special Evacuation Commando). The Commando performed transport duties under the cover name "Agricultural Fertilizers-Oskar Schwartz & Son". In the Berlin Document Centre I found the officer's service sheet. From this it appears he was also at the 'Special Duty Office', SS-WVHA Amt A-V zbV. In his interrogation he told Allied investigators that in the second half of April 1945 a Junkers Ju 390 aircraft of KG 200 had taken materials related to the "Chronos" and "Laternentraeger" projects to Bodo airbase in Norway. The aircraft was painted pale blue and bore Swedish Air Force markings. As far as I remember it took off from the airfield close to Schweidnitz (Swidnice) near Fuerstenstein (Ksiaz). and before the flight was heavily guarded by SS and covered with canvas. In Norway the transport was supervised by SS-Obergruppenfuehrer Jakob Sporrenberg."
Very interesting.

I will try to look more into this case with the help of some local know-it-alls.

But, Igor Witkowski? Is that the guy with all the weird theories?

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Post by Scarlett » 09 Aug 2006 17:45

ohrdruf wrote:
Professor Ronald C Newton: "El Cuarto Lado del Triangulo", Ed. Sudamericana, publ Bs As 1995, at pp. 300 and 309 mentions the courier service run between S America and Europe (Rome and Madrid respectively) direct until suspended at the end of 1941. The service was run by the Italian airline LATI and the German Condor airline. Diplomatic material was conveyed by both airlines. Possibly Condor civilian aircraft were re-employed during the period in question.
There were two FW 200 serving with Syndicado Condor in Brazil. The former D-AXFO "Pommern", given to Condor June 27, 1939 and operated in Brazil under designation PP-CBI Abaitara, and D-ASBK "Holstein", given to Condor June 29, 1939 and operated in Brazil under PP-CBJ Arumani. All sources I know report service until 1947 between Rio de Janeiro and Buenos Aires and Porto Alegre respectively. There is no documentary evidence as to trans-atlantic service.
Flight time during the transfer flights was about 41 hours including refuelling stops at Sevilla, Bathurst and Natal.


ohrdruf wrote:In an English language summary to his book on German advanced wartime technologies in Poland, Igor Witkowski, wrote:

"SS-Sturmbannfuehrer Rudolf Schuster was an officer of SS-RSHA Abt.III. From 4 June 1944 he was responsible for transport with SS-ELF (Special Evacuation Commando). The Commando performed transport duties under the cover name "Agricultural Fertilizers-Oskar Schwartz & Son". In the Berlin Document Centre I found the officer's service sheet. From this it appears he was also at the 'Special Duty Office', SS-WVHA Amt A-V zbV. In his interrogation he told Allied investigators that in the second half of April 1945 a Junkers Ju 390 aircraft of KG 200 had taken materials related to the "Chronos" and "Laternentraeger" projects to Bodo airbase in Norway. The aircraft was painted pale blue and bore Swedish Air Force markings. As far as I remember it took off from the airfield close to Schweidnitz (Swidnice) near Fuerstenstein (Ksiaz). and before the flight was heavily guarded by SS and covered with canvas. In Norway the transport was supervised by SS-Obergruppenfuehrer Jakob Sporrenberg."
There don't exist any records of a SS-Sturmbannfuehrer Rudolf Schuster or even a member of the SS by that name. So it is rather improbable, that he could tell anything during interrogations.
Even if the Ju 390 V2 actually existed, it was by no means an operational aircraft, that could serve with a KG zbV.
SS-Gruppenfuehrer Jakob Sporrenberg was in Norway, being Police- and SS- leader "Süd-Norwegen". But it is rather improbable, that he was in Bodoe, as this was the area of SS-Gruppenführer Wilhelm Rediess, Police- and SS-leader "Nord-Norwegen".

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Post by ohrdruf » 10 Aug 2006 14:49

Scarlett

While I admire your enthusiasm, you have not read the material correctly. Jakob Sporrenberg certainly existed and was responsible for the mopping up operations at Schweidnitz. It was through the release in the late 1990s of Polish State documents relating to his trial in Poland for murdering 62 persons connected to the "Chronos" project at Fuerstenstein that information regarding the Bell came to light. The documents do not say that Sporrenberg operated in Norway, and I do not think that I said it either.

There is another document you may know about scheduling various aircraft types for war-end flights with KG 200. The Luftwaffe situation in late April 1945 was that anything which flew was welcome. The condition in which the alleged Ju 390 V-2 found itself cannot even be guessed at. As I mentioned before the 1945 Argentine intelligence archive has a document reporting the arrival of a multi-engined German aircraft from Europe with the Bell equipment on board and although there may be nothing in Northern archives to substantiate the flight, the Argentine document has to be given considerable weight.

Whereas Witkowski may have some "weird" theories, and I agree that not all his ideas are sound, he has succeeded in unearthing some extraordinary material. A nutty professor is not necesarily always a buffoon. To a large extent we are working in the dark in these fringe histories. For example, you do not know, or at least do not mention, the activities of the two Condor FW 200s during the war. One imagines they were not left by the Germans to be impounded by the Brazilians, and so where did they go? Merely because we have a gap in our knowledge does not allow us to assume that they played no further part in events. They remain a loose end.

There is a document at NARA (CF-OP-2315, Naval Intelligence Box) "German Disembarkations at San Clemente del Tuyu" dated 18 April 1945 which mentions the two FW 200 aircraft. It reads: "22.5.1944. General Faupel acting for Martin Bormann in Argentina wrote referring to two reports, one from Leute (German financier) and General Pistarini (Argentine Chief of General Staff) suggesting two FW 200 Condors since overland shipments Spain/Cadiz no longer possible." This suggests that two FW 200 Condors were available which could make the flight from Madrid to Buenos Aires possibly with the intermediate refuelling stop in the Spanish Sahara. What aircraft were these?

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Post by Scarlett » 10 Aug 2006 17:14

ohrdruf wrote:Scarlett

While I admire your enthusiasm, you have not read the material correctly. Jakob Sporrenberg certainly existed and was responsible for the mopping up operations at Schweidnitz. It was through the release in the late 1990s of Polish State documents relating to his trial in Poland for murdering 62 persons connected to the "Chronos" project at Fuerstenstein that information regarding the Bell came to light. The documents do not say that Sporrenberg operated in Norway, and I do not think that I said it either.

There is another document you may know about scheduling various aircraft types for war-end flights with KG 200. The Luftwaffe situation in late April 1945 was that anything which flew was welcome. The condition in which the alleged Ju 390 V-2 found itself cannot even be guessed at. As I mentioned before the 1945 Argentine intelligence archive has a document reporting the arrival of a multi-engined German aircraft from Europe with the Bell equipment on board and although there may be nothing in Northern archives to substantiate the flight, the Argentine document has to be given considerable weight.

Whereas Witkowski may have some "weird" theories, and I agree that not all his ideas are sound, he has succeeded in unearthing some extraordinary material. A nutty professor is not necesarily always a buffoon. To a large extent we are working in the dark in these fringe histories. For example, you do not know, or at least do not mention, the activities of the two Condor FW 200s during the war. One imagines they were not left by the Germans to be impounded by the Brazilians, and so where did they go? Merely because we have a gap in our knowledge does not allow us to assume that they played no further part in events. They remain a loose end.

There is a document at NARA (CF-OP-2315, Naval Intelligence Box) "German Disembarkations at San Clemente del Tuyu" dated 18 April 1945 which mentions the two FW 200 aircraft. It reads: "22.5.1944. General Faupel acting for Martin Bormann in Argentina wrote referring to two reports, one from Leute (German financier) and General Pistarini (Argentine Chief of General Staff) suggesting two FW 200 Condors since overland shipments Spain/Cadiz no longer possible." This suggests that two FW 200 Condors were available which could make the flight from Madrid to Buenos Aires possibly with the intermediate refuelling stop in the Spanish Sahara. What aircraft were these?
SS-Gruppenfuehrer Jakob Sporrenberg existed.
He was from 16 August 1943 until 25 November 1944: SS and Police Leader "Lublin" in Poland and.
from 26 November 1944-May 1945: SS and Police Leader "Süd-Norwegen" (South Norway). He was captured in Norway May 11, 1945.
He was tried before a Polish court, Warsaw, 1950 and sentenced to death because of his organisation and execution of."Aktion Erntefest",
the mass murder of 43,000 jews on a single day, November 3, 1943, inTrawniki, Poniatowa and Majdanek.
There is no indication that he left Norway in April 1945.

There is no evidence except the flight-log of Joachim Eisenmann, that the Ju 390 V 2 existed. Noboby else has reported seeing the aircraft, noboby seems to have taken a pic. IF the aircraft actually existed, it could not have been completed before the beginning of October 1944, but none of the surviving Junkers Reports of the months prior to this date gives any indication about it. The max take off weight of Ju 390 V1 was 38 to, the empty weight 28 to., giving an indication, that the aircraft was not capable of long-distance-flights. Even the Ju 290 A5 had a take-off-weight of 41 to.
This was due to the structural weakness of the Ju 390 experimental-aircraft (three were planned), which had converted Ju 290 fuselages and empannages and outer wings, only the middle part of the wing with the six engines had a new design. The Ju 390 V-aircraft were far away technically from the production version, which should have max take-off-weight of 75 to. So even if the Ju 390 V2 actually existed, and if it actually should have flown to Bodoe, where then should it have gone to? Most sincerely not to South-America.

The two FW 200 given to Syndicado Condor were the FW 200 A S-6 and S-7 with 720 HP BMW engines and about 13 to max take-off-weight. They had range of about 3,000km and, during their transfer flight, needed two refuelling-stops between Sevilla and Rio de Janeiro. Both aircraft were still in operation in Brazil with their 1939-markings after the war until March 8, 1947 PP-CBI Abaitara was rammed on the ground by a DC-3. The aircraft was heavily damaged and could not be repaired. As the regular air service with only one remaining aircraft seemed impossible, PP-CBY Arumani was scrapped the same year.
So, if these aircraft were used during the war for transports for the German government, you could easily give evidence for it by asking VARIG to at first look at the flight-plans of Cruzeiro do Sul, and if the aircraft don't show up, look for lease agreements. So you could, as you stay in South-America, easily support your assertions by hard evidence. That is much better than speculation about loose ends..

General Faupel was not acting for Bormann in Argentina, but was head of the "Ibero-amerikanisches Institut" in Berlin.
He, together with his wife, committed suicide May 1, 1945.
After the war, there was a lot of fiction and fake around Faupel, including the story, that he travelled by sub to Argentina and met Juan Peron in a church to persuade him to undertake a coup. And on this occasion he is told to have given to Evita, who was his top-spy, an expensive necklace as a gift. Very funny indded.

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Post by ohrdruf » 11 Aug 2006 16:17

The problem we have is that whatever type of aircraft came to Argentina, if one came to Argentina, it was intended to be shrouded in secrecy. The evidence of Eisenmann's log book suggests that there was somebody at his shoulder telling him not to enter the identification details, and I do not think that the lack of a photo can be used as evidence for the non-existence of an aircraft.

Faupel had been an instructor to the Argentine Army in 1921-1926. During the later 1930s he was the Reich ambassador to Madrid and controlled SD espionage activities in all Hispano-America. The Instituto Ibero-americano had its headquarters in Berlin and was the front organisation for espionage in Latin America. It was run by Faupel. Very few documents have ever been declassified by the Argentine archive, and whether or not he came to Argentina in 1943 to discuss with Admiral Scasso the stirring up of a coup cannot be confirmed from that source.

There is no doubt that U-boats disembarked passengers in Argentina during the war, while the Abwehr/SS ran a lobster smack, the "Santa Barbara" which made two round trips between Europe and Argentina in 1943 and 1944. This should have been impossible but is now undoubted and is one of the great mysteries of the Second World War.

When Brazil entered the war in 1942, Argentina felt sufficiently threatened by Brazil to request the purchase from Germany of six U-boats and a number of maritime reconnaissance aircraft. General Pistarini was behind the request. Whereas Hitler agreed in principle, on the advice of the German Foreign Ministry he ruled that it could not be done openly for fear of compromising Argentine neutrality, and Argentina would have to deal "under the counter" with the various suppliers, i.e. none of the production nor sales would be booked. Exactly what was supplied is unknown. There are no photographs nor records indicating that anything at all was supplied, except that after the war four Second World War U-boat engines were discovered in the Mercedes plant at Gonzalez Catan, where they were being used to supply the factory's power, and whose origin is unknown and undocumented. All these things point to activities connected to Argentina which everybody involved is still at pains to conceal.

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Post by Scarlett » 11 Aug 2006 17:37

ohrdruf wrote: I do not think that the lack of a photo can be used as evidence for the non-existence of an aircraft.
There are lots and lots
- of pics of Ju 390 V1
- of pics taken at Junkers Dessau, Rechlin and Lärz between October 1944 and April 1945, none showing Ju 390 V 2.
The lack of a pic makes the probability higher that it didn't exist than that it did.

ohrdruf wrote:There is no doubt that U-boats disembarked passengers in Argentina during the war, while the Abwehr/SS ran a lobster smack, the "Santa Barbara" which made two round trips between Europe and Argentina in 1943 and 1944. This .......... is now undoubted .....
Please give some hard evidence, why this is now undoubted.
ohrdruf wrote:When Brazil entered the war in 1942, Argentina felt sufficiently threatened by Brazil to request the purchase from Germany of six U-boats and a number of maritime reconnaissance aircraft. General Pistarini was behind the request. Whereas Hitler agreed in principle, on the advice of the German Foreign Ministry he ruled that it could not be done openly for fear of compromising Argentine neutrality, and Argentina would have to deal "under the counter" with the various suppliers, i.e. none of the production nor sales would be booked. Exactly what was supplied is unknown. There are no photographs nor records indicating that anything at all was supplied, except that after the war four Second World War U-boat engines were discovered in the Mercedes plant at Gonzalez Catan, where they were being used to supply the factory's power, and whose origin is unknown and undocumented. All these things point to activities connected to Argentina which everybody involved is still at pains to conceal.


When did Hitler agree? When die the Foreign ministry advice? You will have evidence you can show us, no doubt.

"none of the production nor sales would be booked. Exactly what was supplied is unknown. There are no photographs nor records indicating that anything at all was supplied"
Mysteries, mysteries mysteries ............................

And all things are very well concealed, I'm quite certain, you being the only person knowing about it..

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Post by ohrdruf » 11 Aug 2006 20:02

Scarlett

Mysteries, mysteries...but I do not claim a monopoly on the evidence. All I am doing is quoting from published works. If the information does not coincide with your own understanding, or your own works of reference, I am sorry, but what can I do?

Now, the information I have quoted above comes from:

"The Nazi Menace in Argentina 1931-1947", published by the Board of Trustees of the Leland Stanford Junior University, 1992. This book appeared in Spanish in Argentina under the title "El Cuarto Lado del Triangulo" published by Editorial Sudamericana SA, 1995 under ISBN 950-07-1044.7, and this is the copy I have.

The author, Professor Ronald C Newton, was commissioned by CEANA to examine and report on classified files in the Argentine archives and report back to Congress, which he did by a voluminous report. The book quoted above then followed. Professor Newton is a controversial figure for many historians and writers in Argentina since some of the conclusions he drew about German activities seemed to be what his American audience would like to be told, rather than what the facts themselves suggested.

I would like to point out that this is just a discussion, nobody loses face and there are no prizes for the "winner". I cannot concede the point about the photos because I think it is invalid. I have never seen a photo of the pre-prototype Ju 390 which flew in 1943 but I do believe in its existence.
The Argentine documents only mention the arrival of a "multi-engined aircraft" and this may have been one of a number of machines, from the Ju 89 you mention to a BV 222.

If you wish me to quote the references from Professor Newton's book to satisfy the matters you mention in your last E-mail above, signal your request again and I will do so.

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Post by Scarlett » 12 Aug 2006 10:51

ohrdruf wrote:Scarlett
I would like to point out that this is just a discussion, nobody loses face and there are no prizes for the "winner".

If you wish me to quote the references from Professor Newton's book to satisfy the matters you mention in your last E-mail above, signal your request again and I will do so.
This certainly is just a discussion. But when incidents are reported, that seem to be improbable I use to go to the sources of information in order to check the possibility and, if that is confirmed, the probability of this incident against the other source-material available.
And here I have a problem with reports about "multi-engined aircraft" flown in to Argentina from Germany by the end of the war in May 1945, as well as with Hitler's willingness to export u-boats in 1942 to keep a very far-away-country neutral.

So, I'm not interested in quotations from the book of Ronald C. Newton, as far as he gives his personal opinions.

What I'm interested in are the original sources he is relying upon. If there are quotations available from the referenced material,
together with the exact definition of this material, I'm very interested indeed.

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Post by Universal the God of War » 23 Aug 2006 04:16

I found out about these refuellings by reading a russian version of Warplanes of the third reich (translated).

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Post by Gauntlet » 30 Aug 2006 13:50

I thought about all this Ju 390 to Bodø teories, when something very vital hit me:

Could a Ju 390 even land on a small runway like Bodø's (~1200x30m)?

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Re: Ju 390 in flight refuelling

Post by Simon Gunson » 02 Mar 2008 09:01

Bodo was quite indeed 1200 metres long (correction and edited).

I have however investigated the Ju-390's performance. It had 55% less wing loading than the B-29. It had 18% more horsepower than the B-29. The Ju-390 had an 85% better power to weight ratio than the B-29. This put's the Ju-390 in league with the Convair B-36 Peacemaker if you compare power to weight:ratio and wing loading.

The B-36 could take off over a 50 foot obstacle in just 1,500 metres so that Bodo is not impossible for a fully laden Ju-390. Also in terms of runway strength the Ju 390 only required a runway of 3.6 PCN. In other words you need something of the order 30 PCN for a Boeing 737-300. The Ju-390 could land and take off from a peat bog.

Image

Landing distance is less of a problem than take off. Most aircraft only require two thirds the take off distance for landings. For a short hop from Germany the landing weight would not be too great.

Image
And there is no known photo of Ju 390 V2, all existing photos of Ju 390 have been identified as showing V1.
Sorry Scarlett but you're wrong. There is. GH + UK is the Ju 390 V2:

Image

Image

The Ju-390 V1 was a maritime patrol bomber with a shorter fuselage as it had been converted from the Ju-90 V6 airframe The Ju90 V6, werke number J4918, civil registration D-AOKD, Jul. 40 to Apr.41 then LUFTWAFFE, KH+XC, Apr. 41 to Apr.42, returned to Junkerswerke and used for Ju3 90-V1 construction. Pancherz said in a September 1969 interview that he flew the Ju-390 transport to South Africa.

PS: Igor Witowski is a meticulous researcher, but he has used records from Eastern sources rather than Western archives. In particular Polish wartime records declassified in 1998.

These Polosh was records also detail a Polish diplomat who witnessed a Ju-390 being dismantled in May 1945 at an airfield on a German owned ranch in Paysandu, Uruguay. This corroborates the Argentine Intelligence records of a Ju-390 flight to nearby Gualaguay in Rios Entros province where it unloaded the bell from Silesia.

Witowski isn't crazy. Some of the material he has dug up is on the verge of science fiction but that is because it was what the Germans were working on late in the war.
Last edited by Kiwikid on 02 Mar 2008 23:35, edited 1 time in total.

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Re:

Post by Davide Pastore » 02 Mar 2008 10:00

Scarlett wrote:http://www.members.tripod.com/chip2500/id177.htm
The markings are fake. It is a well known pic, in Kössler/ Ott "Die großen Dessauer" it is on page 110 with the very clear marking U+K.. The pic on the link is a mirror-image of the original with faked markings.
It is the same picture posted by Kiwikid in the last post.

Well, even assuming the markings are fakes, the two aircrafts shown by Kiwikid seems different (to me, at least) particularly in the length of the forward fuselage ahead of the wings.

Possibly it is the same aircraft, before and after some modification?

Or, maybe, the entire second picture is a hoax?

BTW I find more than a bit strange that, while the central part of the wing and the tailplane are quite dark, the external part of the wings are lighted (to better show the markings :? )

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